Hank Moorehouse in England
This is a reprint from Tops in November 1982. We lost Terry earlier this year in January 2011 and Hank 6 months later. As you can see from the picture that Terry did make it to Abbott’s, and when he showed up he was greeted by Abbott President Greg Bordner, Abbott Plant Manager Gordon Miller, and Abbott’s Sales Manager Hank Moorehouse, all in Watford Hornet soccer attire.
I know that Hank Moorehouse will write in the NEW TOPS about the British I.B.M. convention in Hastings, so I felt that you must have the truth from our side of the water!!! Hastings is a very old town, known mostly for the famous Battle of Hastings in the year 1066 (or thereabouts – I wasn’t there), and it opened it’s arms to welcome 7000 magicians for their annual thrash. Various parcels of magic from Abbott’s had been arriving at my house for some weeks, and can you imagine the temptation that Hank and Greg put in my path – fancy a crazy magic nut having about a dozen large parcels of magic in his house and he is not able to open them for some weeks and see what is there!
The day came to welcome Hank to the country at London Airport and he staggered through to the meeting area with yet more parcel s, but most important I straight away saw the duty-free bottle of Scotch!!! I told him that he was not tired after his all night flight and that he was going to his first soccer match that day. I kept him awake, fed him and took him to see my team Watford, and of course we won as usual! The Moorehouse, tired and aching, was dragged around by me for two shows that night, and then another one on Sunday and in between much discussion on our job to come of jointly M.C.ing the Gala Show at Hastings, Then came Monday morning and the incredible task of loading Hank’s personal stuff , my stuff and props for the show and all of Abbotts dealer’s stand into my little Datsun. There was just about room to squeeze The Moorehouse in the passenger front seat between two flagstaffs and a few Zombies and so we trundled off to our first stop, the McComb household. Lunch with Billy and then onto Hastings to unload at the hotel and then a walkabout in the evening to various local pubs to give Hank some local colour, but I think I ended up with the most colour!
Tuesday morning was setting up the trade stand day, and as the dealers trade fair was at the end of the pier this involved a fair amount of carrying parcels up and down!!! This was great Pun as the various parcels were opened and all the splendid goodies saw the air of England for the first time, The decorating of the stand was done with the help of many folks who lent us cloths, ladders, bits of wood, string, scotch tape and so on, and after nearly a full day’s work we were looking good and the name of Abbott’s was being held high. Hank gave me instruction in some of the items I didn’t know and with the aid of my calculator the great task of converting the prices to U.K. pounds was completed, and the finishing task was the sign Hank put up – “Official Translator Terry Seabrooke”! ! !
The next day we were open for business and the magicians came flocking into see what was the latest and to see what the famous Abbott’s organization had to offer. What a thrill when I took in my first money, one pound-fifty pence for a pack of cards! One thing I learned from this convention is that it is no fun standing all day behind a dealer’s stand, and folks like me who are not used to it find the old legs have plenty to say towards the end of the day! Still, as we got organized, each of us (Hank, Billy and myself) ambled off to look around and recharge the batteries at the thoughtfully placed bar! On Thursday morning for the dealers trade show, we were second on at 9:30 A.M., and I think we woke them all up with one of the craziest few minutes you have seen, the three of us doing. I don’t know how many tricks in about six minutes and leaving the audience with no doubt that Abbott’s were here. A busy day behind the stand and many laughs and picture taking going on, and the same pattern for Friday.
Saturday was Hank’s big day, and I really felt for him. The stand had to be opened at 9:30 A.M., then he had to do his lecture at 10:30 A.M., then back to the stand at lunch time and then he had to come to the theatre for rehearsals for the Gala show, then back to the stand for an hour and then to the theatre for two show, one at 5:00 P.M. and one at *:30 P.M. and then he had close-up to do at midnight!!!! Such is the restful Saturday he had, and to top it all he had to cope with me after I found out that Watford had lost that afternoon!!! At this point I must tell you that many, many of the magicians said that the Moorehouse lecture was without doubt one of the highlights of the whole week – I am sorry I didn’t see it, but I was holding the fort for Abbott’s in the dealers room whilst my boss did his stuff!!!
Packing up day on Sunday, and much dealing between dealers of stock remaining and then only two parcels left to take back to Watford, and much more room in the car this time! Monday evening we all went to the Magic Circle, and by the reaction of everyone it was obvious that Hank and Abbott’s had gained new friends and fans. So back home for me and unpacking the goodies that were left – word soon gets around in the magic game and several of the chaps found out that I was looking after the Abbott stuff that was left over, and since Hank’s departure I have had several visitors to the house to have a look and I managed to sell quite a few items already, and believe me, I get quite a kick out of it!
So another convention is over, and the British were thrilled to have a name such as Abbott’s represented so well over here, and if we are lucky Abbott’s will be back soon again, and maybe Greg will come and take a look at us! As for me, I am delighted that it looks like next year I shall be taking reprisal action against Abbott’s for sending Hank over, and I shall be coming to Colon in 1983.
Serves you all right!!!!!
Terry Seabrooke appeared at Abbott’s Get-Together in 1979, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1991, 1995, and 2004.
Hank Moorehouse appeared at Abbott’s Get-Together in 1970, 1974, 1990, 1991, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2004, and 2008.